When I read Kristy’s story below I just thought it all too familiar against the others as well. It begs the question, why do the same people get bullied no matter where they move to and what they do to try to prevent it? What is it that attracts a bully, or in the cast of Kristy, many bullies to us? Why are some of us targets? Certainly studies show a correlation between certain traits and being bullied. It doesn’t make it fair or easier to read stories like Kristy’s below, but we still have to figure out how to break the cycle that bullying can become before further permanent damage is done to us. ~Alan Eisenberg
I honestly can’t remember a time of when I WASN’T bullied. I can remember going to daycare at the age of 5 and being teased by the other kids for my overbite. And when I went to the care taker and told her what the other kids were doing she told me that those things were true and so she saw no issue with what the others were doing. This was only to be the beginning of my life and sadly still my life in the business world.
In elementary school I was teased, shoved, and bullied tremendously. I didn’t have a single friend, but how could I when I didn’t trust anyone. I had sand thrown in my face during recess, my lunch would get drinks poured over it which would result in me getting in trouble with the teachers because I refused to eat my food. I would get balls thrown at my face and knock off my glasses and make my nose bleed. Time and time again I would go to teacher, principles, and counselors and no one would help me. I can remember one day my mom came to my school to record some of the things that were happening to me and even still the school staff didn’t see any wrong doings. They continued to blame me for the incidents.
Sadly I quickly began to believe them.
Then in fifth grade my family moved to Kentucky. I thought it as a great chance to start fresh since no one would know who I was or my past. That dream faded nearly as quickly as it started.
Not only were the students teasing me but I had to deal with my teacher as well. She wouldn’t give me my assignments, so I struggled to pass. And because my grades were slipping I was in trouble at home as well. And my parents never did want to believe me that a teacher would withhold assignments from a student.
I dreaded every year valentines would come along. Those little cards for class were horrible. My parents always made me get a box and write nice stuff to my classmates because it was a requirement that every student give one to every student in the class. When I got my bag it would only have a handful and the ones that were in there were anything but nice. They would have ugly pictures drawn of me to match harming words. Then when students saw that they got a card from me they would say across the room horrible things and act completely disgusted. All the while the teacher sitting and not doing a thing to stop it.
Then came middle school. This is when things started becoming more physical for me. These three years are a complete blur. I have tried to block most of it out. But I do remember on graduation day having to be escorted by security guards because of threats that I had received. I do remember though that I would have to run home after getting off the bus for fear of getting caught and getting beaten. I remember one time even I wasn’t as fast as I had hoped and got taken down by 5 other kids in my neighborhood and having a whole cans worth of silly string shoved and held in my mouth. They wanted me to swallow it but I refused and took the beating instead.
High school was without a doubt my most frightening time. By this time I couldn’t go to my parents and family for support because even they had stopped believing to the fact that my teasing was this bad let alone still continuing.
I am probably the only person who has nearly failed PE, not by choice. I can remember one day in particular very clearly. It was a requirement for us to change into our gym clothes before class started. I had gotten teased while dressing with the other girls so I started going into a bathroom stall that was in the changing room. I couldn’t even get relief for this. One particular girl that I was terrified of came very loudly stomping up to the stall I was in. I quickly locked the door but I could sense the evil look on her face just on the other side. She ordered for me to come out or I would suffer the consequences. I was petrified. What could I do, if I came out I knew I would surely get it. But if I stayed where I was I stood somewhat of a chance. So I stayed where I was. I was shaking I was trapped. Then the next thing I knew she had kicked the locked door open. It slammed against my face with a hard thud. Then she left me there laying on the floor with my head up against the toilet. I went out to tell the PE teacher what had just happened with blood gushing out of my nose and my face cut up and he only told me that what is done is done nothing he can do about it now and that he saw no issue. I shouldn’t have been in the stall in the first place but changing out with all the other girls. Needless to say I never went that changing room again.
I have permanent hearing damage because on a daily basis for four straight years I had trumpets blasted in my ears.
And on my very last day of school, at my very last class. My band teacher who I had all through high school came up and told me, exact words, “I’m happy to see you go because you were my least favorite student of all.”
I figured that when I left school and into the business world that the bullying would get better. But I’m still waiting for that moment. I’m still harassed on a daily basis. Even as far as being sexually molested at one of my jobs.
Now the way I cope with it is by emotionally shutting down when it happens. It is all I can do.